The past few weeks have been busy for LCS teams, as more trades, signings, and departures continue to be announced.
One recent move that shocked League of Legends fans was fan-favorite AD carry Zachary “Sneaky” Scuderi possibly leaving Cloud9 after six years on the squad. The popular cosplayer stated on stream that “some people” didn’t want to play with him anymore, and many felt Eric “Licorice” Ritchie was the teammate he was referencing.
The top laner started to see some chatter about the situation online and decided to speak up about the situation on his own stream.
“It kinda sucks it’s turning out this way,” Licorice said. “I wish it could have gone differently. I think it’s just awkward now for everyone.”
Licorice explained that he felt the team had ongoing underlying issues throughout the last season, specifically related to communication and reviews. He said that C9 wasn’t able to talk about which individuals needed to improve and would instead talk about the team as a whole.
“I wanted to see changes for next year,” he said. “I knew that could mean players being removed, even me being removed. That wouldn’t be what I want, but I was prepared.”
From there, Licorice addressed questions and concerns people had on Twitter.
It seemed like many people were confused why Cloud9 hadn’t responded to Sneaky’s allegations. Licorice stated that he felt the team should have informed fans that Sneaky was still deciding what he wanted to do “to be more transparent about it.” That was also a tweet the players were waiting on, since it wasn’t really something they felt they could speak on before it was made official.
But Licorice felt that he had also played a part in the drama. When a fan asked how his relationship with Sneaky was presently, he admitted it wasn’t good.
“I should have reached out to him when everything was happening and I didn’t. Now it’s just super awkward for either of us to reach out. That’s mainly on me for not talking to him. It would have been really hard, but I should have done it anyway,” Licorice said.
A few hours after Licorice’s stream concluded, Cloud9 owner Jack Etienne made an official statement on Sneaky’s unclear future, though fans were still left with many questions.
“We haven’t officially announced Sneaky’s plans to date because he asked us not to while he considers his options,” Etienne said.
Despite admitting Sneaky’s request for silence, Etienne then listed all of the options the player was considering. They included continuing to play for Cloud9, getting traded to a team of his choice “at his desired pay,” retiring from pro play but staying with Cloud9, or just retiring independently.
Etienne also noted that continuing to play for C9 would involve “fighting for his position” as a starter. This is something C9’s owner said all players would have to do in his position.
“I wanted to respect his wishes but based on the community response, I feel like it’s better to be transparent at this moment. Please respect all Cloud9 members at this time,” Etienne explained in answering why he was revealing these options publicly.
The fans appeared to appreciate the transparency and thanked Etienne for explaining the situation further. Still, many Cloud9 followers were upset about the possibility of Sneaky leaving the team.